Gilbert River Rehabilitation
The project is enhancing the long term condition and resilience of habitats and landscapes in northern and remote Australia by reducing the impact of weeds of national significance across 76,000 ha by refining and applying techniques to aerially ignite Rubber Vine and other weeds across heavy, light and scattered infestations during the wet season when the risk of wildfire is minimal.
This is being achieved in three stages:
- Ground trials will establish base data/criteria for fire application:
Maximum moisture levels that can be present in plants for burning.
Soil moisture – impact on fire and impact of fire on soil;
Plant dry time required for ignition.
Determine temperature range available for the ignition of both canopy and ground fuel.
Trials of available ignition mediums including required rates for ignition of large trial plots.
Trials of available ignition equipment.
Pre-treating areas with emulsion to generate larger ignition mass.
- Helicopter application to explore: Application rates of ignition substance.
Comparisons of available ignition mediums.
Review of available ignition equipment.
Development of patterns for temperature and direction control.
- Wide-scale aerial ignition across the Gilbert River catchment:
The developed technique will be applied over the vast weed infested area throughout our region.
The applications will begin at the head of catchments and progress downstream to the end of the catchment.
The Gilbert River Catchment Rehabilitation Plan Development Project team has established a panel of landholders to encourage and negotiate with landholders ahead of the treatment project to maintain strategic continuity.
Partners int eh project included:
- Tropical Weeds Research Centre
- Etheridge Shire Council
- Gilbert River Catchment Rehabilitation Plan Development Project Team
- National Rubber Vine Management